Getting to know Valerie Grondin

Who is, or has been, the biggest influence on your art?

I remember the first time I saw a Rothko, it was a shock, a huge artistic emotion. I also like Franz Kline, Cy Twombly or the Expressionism movement with Nolde, Heckel, Kirchner, Van Dongen or Jawlensky. I don’t know if they have an influence on my art but I appreciate the energy and strength expressed in thier work. 

Which of your works is your personal favorite and why?

Each painting is unique and reminds of me of a particular moment IN my life: light, music, atmosphere, mood….  a condensed recollection of a specific time.

Of all your travels, which city or place inspires you the most? Why?

23 years ago, I spent two months in Berlin where I had an artistic « revelation ». I started to paint with watercolors and black ink. I like the energy and artistic freedom in Berlin.

What is your creative process like?

There are two phases in my painting: during the preparation phase I work on the floor with acrylic and mixed medium on paper. then comes the construction phase when apply selected strips of prepared painted and torn paper to the canvas on the wall. I am looking for the tension between what is hidden and what is not. 

What is something quirky or unexpected about you that most people don’t know?

I have another field of research using creation in a therapeutic practice with people who are dying. 

How has your practice changed over time?

I am much freer and courageous than I used to be, I take more risks with materials and scale. Also, I have much more fun.